27 April 2008

Grow Your Own

- in defence of beards

Written late April 2008 - (122 lines)


Most people call it by its proper name
A beard - but finding that too tame
Others use terms like "facial art"
Or "a personal statement" to set them apart
And some genius found the time to invent
The expression "facial embellishment"
While still others say "thatch for my T-cup"
All right, I just made that last one up

There are some who find it really weird
That I have such a big wild beard -
I find that strange for in actual
Fact it is surely more natural
To leave it growing merrily
Than mowing it artificially


But here are some answers if you must know:
In my late teens it started to grow
All by itself though the pace a little slow
I was happy and proud to let it do so
Now, I thought, the whole wide world can
See I am not a boy but a man!

As an IT-consultant I was rather astute
Smartly turned out in a business suit
Shirt and tie, matching shoes and belt
My exterior reflecting the way I felt
Always polite and never late
Looking for ways to increase my rate
From early in the morning till half past ten
It was: "Yes Sir! - No Sir! - You want it when?"
Those years are well in the past but I recall
That a neatly trimmed beard was part of it all

And as a sailor and a mountaineer
My beard never once made anybody sneer
Whether in harbour or riding a wave
No-one suggested that I should shave
In the wilderness an integral part of your kit
It looks even better with your frozen breath in it!

It is also a sunnah if you know what that is
(In Islam a recommended way or practice)
So when I embraced Muhammad's deen [faith]
I was naturally happy to be seen
Greeting the rest of the human race
With a beard framing my friendly face

And since then I have simply let it grow
Partly experiment and partly to show
My respect and compliance with the rules -
So what if it upsets some ignorant fools

Currently I look like a composite man:
A cross between the Vikings and the Taliban


According to recent statistics, most
Women say they are opposed
To men with beards, two thirds said: "No
Thank you! I would much rather go
On my own than run the risk of being seen
With a bearded man - for I am a queen!"

Before anyone starts to cause scenes
As to what this aversion really means
Just a moment, please hold on:
Where were those statistics done?
Are they truly representative
Of people as they currently live
Around the surface of the globe?
Was the sample just a narrow probe
Of countries only in the West?
If so, should we not ask the rest?
Were all major faiths included here
From every geographic sphere
And all socio-economic groups?

So before the beard-less warrior scoops
Up the last conclusion and troops
Off to proclaim the results to the sound
Of a trumpet - look at the background
And not only at what was found

I predict that a survey of Muslims would show
The rate of aversion to be fairly low
Hoping I will not have to eat my words
I say definitely below two thirds
And probably around one quarter or less
But that is just an (un-)educated guess


Physiologists have now been able to show
That as secondary sexual characteristics go
A man's beard, to one who understands
Equates to a woman's mammary glands

So there we have it, I rest my case!
Is it not better for mankind to base
Likes and dislikes on who we really are
Than on cultural habits imported from afar?

And I am confident that nine out of ten
Of the world's countless million men
Would swear an affidavit to pass any test
That from infancy to old age - breast is best

So WHY don't most women love beards?
Now THAT my friends is truly weird!
Exceedingly so, for after all
What could be more natural?

And to follow the logic of that line through:
What really is the matter with you?


And why would a man ever wish to shave?
Just think of the added-up time you could save!
Ten minutes a day over fifty years
Ask any calculator and the figure that appears
Is a total of just over eighteen weeks
Just to remove the fluff from your cheeks -
Time which could no doubt be better spent
So give it up today and repent


I have no polite answer to give when
Clean shaven or lightly bearded men
Decide to give me some friendly advice
About how much younger or how nice
I would look if I trimmed mine or shaved it off -
None of your business, I usually scoff
But what is it which prompts them to say it to me?
I never studied psychology...

Are you a man or just a mouse?
Are you hiding in your house
Unable to find a suitable spouse?
Ha! I knew those lines would arouse
Your anger - but before you reply
Maybe you should give it one more try!

So save your breath and stop your moan
See your doctor for a shot of hormone!
Better for both if you leave me alone
Go away now - and GROW YOUR OWN!


Copyright © 2008 - IBRAHEEM (O.E.H.Johansen) - All Rights Reserved

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